Stripers Clinch Playoff Spot with 14-8 Rout of Norfolk
LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. - The Gwinnett Stripers (78-56) defeated the Norfolk Tides (56-78) 14-8 on Wednesday night at Coolray Field, clinching a spot in the 2019 Governors' Cup Playoffs. The Stripers recorded a season-high 21 hits, including four home runs as they also reduced their magic number to clinch the International League South Division title to one.
The Stripers will host games one and two of the best-of-five first-round playoff series on Wednesday, September 4 and Thursday, September 5 at Coolray Field. Both games will be 7:05 p.m. against a yet-to-be-determined opponent. Tickets are available at the Coolray Field Ticket Office and online at GoStripers.com.
Scoring Recap: Down 3-0 in the bottom of the first, the Stripers tied the game at 3-3 on run-scoring singles from Austin Riley and Adam Duvall and an RBI groundout from Pedro Florimon. In the second, Johan Camargo (2) crushed a 437-foot two-run homer off Ty Blach to give the Stripers a 5-3 lead. Later in the inning, Duvall drove in two more runs with a double to make it 7-3. Leading 9-6 after six innings, Gwinnett put the game away with back-to-back solo homers from Alex Jackson (27) and Jack Lopez (11) in the seventh, and a 368-foot opposite-field three-run homer from Jackson (28) in the eighth. Norfolk's last runs came in the eighth on a two-run homer from Mark Trumbo (4).
Stripers Stats: Jackson produced his team-leading fifth two-homer game of the season, going 2-for-4 with a game-high four RBIs. Sean Kazmar Jr. went a perfect 5-for-5, his second five-hit game of the year. Camargo went 3-for-5 with a homer and three RBIs, and Duvall went 3-for-5 with two RBIs. Huascar Ynoa pitched 3.2 innings and yielded six runs on seven hits in a no-decision. Phil Pfeifer (W, 1-0) tossed 3.1 scoreless innings in relief. Grant Dayton allowed two runs over 2.0 innings.
Tides Stats: Blach (L, 0-1) worked 3.0 innings and surrendered eight runs on 13 hits. Trumbo went 2-for-5 with a homer and three RBIs. Ryan Mountcastle added two doubles and one RBI.
Quote: "Anytime you have success as a team is fun," Kazmar Jr. said. "It's fun to come to the park every day, I'm glad we reached this milestone and we are looking forward to the next."
Postgame Notes: Gwinnett is in the playoffs for the third time in franchise history (2009 IL Wild Card, 2016 IL South title). Ryan LaMarre went 3-for-5 to extend his on-base streak to 32 games, the longest active streak in the IL. Camargo has hit safely in 15 consecutive games with the Stripers dating back to April 16, 2018, batting .523 in that span. Duvall raised his season RBI total to 89, just three shy of tying the Gwinnett single-season record (Ernesto Mejia, 92 RBIs in 2012).
Next Game (Thursday, August 29): Gwinnett vs. Norfolk, 7:05 p.m. at Coolray Field. LHP Tucker Davidson (1-0, 1.72 ERA) for the Stripers vs. LHP Keegan Akin (5-7, 4.91 ERA) for the Tides. Radio Broadcast: 6:50 p.m. on 97.7 and 93.5 FM "The Other Side of the River."
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